After what seems like too long since I’ve had the opportunity to work on one of my own projects (client work and other fun explorations have been keeping me ‘otherwise engaged’) I’ve recently started working on a new series of creature drawings (I use the term ‘series’ loosely… more a way of grouping things in my own mind than anything else).

reptiles rock!

A couple of weeks ago I received a beautiful little notebook, with a very apt cover, as a gift from a friend (thanks Miek!). This book proved the perfect vehicle for a bunch of quick, freehand drawings – made in a bid to loosen-up-the-old-drawing-hand before starting on the larger scale, final drawings. The silky smooth paper took the ink beautifully (no bleed!) and produced a very satisfying skritch skritch sound as the nib moved across its surface. I also love the crinkly, tactile quality of the pages that have buckled where I was a bit heavy-handed with the ink application.

a glossy starling, and some experimental textures and patterns

As the drawings were made directly in Indian ink with a dip pen, and thus no preliminary pencil drawing, some of these critters are a tad wonky! But I like their spontaneity (something I hope to maintain an element of in the final drawings) and, restricted to black ink only (my final drawings will be in black & white, perhaps later translated into colour screenprints), I had a lot of fun experimenting with various ways to create feathery/furry/scaly/spiky/etc patterns and textures.

a puffer fish, and some more experimental textures and patterns

And finally, here’s an animated GIF of the filled notebook (it’s a 20 frame GIF so it may take a few moments to download properly!)…

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